MoneyMindedMoms: Ask Your Employer to Offer LTC Insurance

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Ask Your Employer to Offer LTC Insurance
May 17 2011 03:00 PM | Phyllis Shelton  in Protecting Your Family -----
My previous blogs have explained why long-term care insurance is the most cost effective way to pay for long-term care, something that most of us will need at some point in our life. It was necessary to lay that groundwork because every major survey comes back with similar responses: a third of consumers think Medicare or health insurance pays for long-term care (LTC) and a significant number of respondents have no idea what pays for long-term care. Prudential’s 2010 LTC cost survey showed that only one out of four even listed long-term care insurance as a payment option (p. 21). Prudential's 2010 LTC cost survey

The other really disturbing response in the Prudential survey was that only 8% thought LTC insurance should be purchased before age 50 (p. 19). The advice you often hear from media personalities to wait until you are 60 is based on how policies worked 15-20 years ago. Today LTC insurance is much more costly at age 60 and much harder to qualify for medically. It is available to ages 18-79; however, it's best to get this valuable coverage as early as you can.Your employer can offer it to all employees age 18+ and usually there is a one-time opportunity to get it with limited or no health questions, a true gift from your employer.

Ask your employer to offer long-term care insurance that is qualified for the Long-Term Care Partnership which means if the insurance benefit isn’t enough, you can turn to Medicaid for help and protect assets equal to the benefits your policy has paid out. (Please refer to my earlier blog Does Medicaid Pay for Long-Term Care? if you need more information about how that works.) Also make sure you buy the 5% compound inflation as that will make your benefits triple every 15 years. Insurance companies are charging more for that, and now is the time to get it while it is still affordable.

My next blog will list the five major decisions you make to determine how much a long-term care insurance plan will cost.

Phyllis Shelton is the President of LTC Consultants, a Nashville-based consulting company specializing in long-term care insurance consumer education and training since 1991. She experienced first hand the implications of long-term caregiving with her grandfather, mother and brother. Because the need is so great, she is now focused on helping consumers who don't have a local agent acquire long-term care insurance. She can be reached at


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